The Story of Steere
It was the fall of 1949, when Frank W. Steere Jr. – a chemical engineer working for the BF Goodrich Company, decided to take the leap of starting his own business around a new – vinyl plastisol material he was introduced to in the rubber industry. With less than $1,000 to his name, Frank quit his job and setup shop in the basement of his Akron, OH home. His father, who took the above photo, told him that not having any money was his greatest asset – and that one day through hard work, this picture will hang in your company’s lobby. Frank’s first product – vinyl coated 3/8″ hex bolts for Industrial Rayon Corporation – was well received, and he was forced to move his operation out of the basement and into rented space.
Frank soon connected with Ben Stiller of Quikey Manufacturing Co and began making dip molded – vinyl coin purses known as “Quikoins” – his first big success. In the 1950’s, Steere made millions of coin purses for Quikey and soon began selling vinyl grips and sleeves to a wide variety of industries.
In the 1960’s, safety began playing a large role in new car designs and Steere began producing dip molded seat belt sleeves for the automotive business. In 1962, Steere built its headquarters in Tallmadge, Ohio – where we still reside today.
In order to meet temperature and thickness requirements, Steere began molding the seat belt sleeves out of polyethylene in the 1970’s. It was during this decade that we began our expertise around the blow molding process. During the 1980’s, Steere took its blow molding capabilities under the hood of the car and started making air induction applications. In the 1990’s, Steere advanced its design capabilities and launched its patented DUAL PROCESS overmolding technology, that enables us to join dissimilar materials and parts.
During the first decade of the 2000’s, Steere focused on complex assemblies and built a stand alone machining business. Today, Steere is a third generation family-owned business. We are especially proud of our heritage and the core values that have made us successful over the years.